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Posted by: Michael Caswell
« on: July 22, 2022, 03:08:23 pm »

It's very sad, but this year in particular, I have only seen three Monarchs fluttering in The Oxbow and at my house on the waters edge of the canal. This is despite my efforts of several years to grow Swamp Milkweed. My front yard has at least twenty plants and my shoreline has more than a hundred.
Each year, I've been plucking the seed pods and storing them for the next spring, then spreading them around. I've been more lucky along the edge of Bowood by Minerva Deland playing field.

When I first moved here, some twelve years or so ago, there was a storm of Monarchs around my house, but sadly that is no longer the case.
One problem inhibiting them is the profusion of Dog Strangling Vine (Black or Pale Swallowart) It is a very invasive pest imported from Ukraine (not those poor peoples fault). It is a relative of our native Milkweed, and it confuses the Monarch to lay it's eggs on it, but unfortunately, the caterpillar will not survive on this pest.
Our woods and parks are infested with this pest, yet no one is paying any attention to it. In particular, The Fairport School district playing fields edging Harts Woods are totally covered in the stuff. 

If this beautiful butterfly is to survive, we need to start pulling this DSV stuff up and dealing with it, so it doesn't spread any more.